wintering a potted tuberous begonia
Hello, I have a large, potted tuberous begonia. It's been growing splendidly on our front, covered porch where it is in a sheltered spot and enjoys a few hours of dappled sunlight each day. How should I care for it over the winter? Do I need to bring it inside: would it be happy in our sun-filled enclosed back porch/mudroom, or elsewhere in the house? Or, do I need to dry & store the tubers and replant? Or, can I leave it on the front porch? Oh yes, we live in Portland... in the south east, a built up neighbourhood. Thanks very much for your help, your advice is hugely appreciated! Best - jennie
Tuberous begonias truly are beautiful, aren’t they? They are considered to be deciduous perennials. They can live for years but they lose their leaves and go dormant – don’t grow – during the winter. At that time, they must be kept in a frost-free place, perhaps a garage or basement. With good care, the bulb should enlarge each year.
Some people remove them from the pot, dry them off, then set them in barely moist peat moss or sawdust until they begin to grow next spring. Other folks store them in the pot, then move the pot and all to the frost-free place. The goal is to ensure the bulbs are still firm and healthy at planting time.
See “Plant bulbs this spring and summer for all-year color” - http://extension.oregonstate.edu/gardening/plant-bulbs-spring-and-summer-all-year-color